- Studies indicate that smartphone addiction has become rampant in the small towns and rural areas of India.
- Experts look to mobile de-addiction centers to address this crisis.
Hand in hand with India’s technological progress, research shows that smartphone addiction has reached skyrocketing levels, especially among youths in rural areas.
A New Epidemic
Smartphone addiction is a behavioral addiction in which your excessive use of smartphones impacts your physical and mental health. It is fuelled by internet overuse and loss of control over smartphone dependency. It is sometimes colloquially known as “nomophobia (NO MObile PHone PhoBIA)” or the fear of being without a mobile phone.
Dr. Rakesh Paswan of the National Mental Health Programme explains that, in this addiction, “the mind-space, free time, and creativity of people turns away from the real world and becomes trapped inside the smartphones.”
Consequences Of Smartphone Addiction
It is well known that smartphones are created to be psychologically addictive. But recent national surveys in India link addiction to smartphones and explosion in internet usage to youth unemployment and lack of opportunity for political or social agency.
Recently, Indians have started acknowledging smartphone addiction among college students and the youth populace in small towns and rural areas. Studies show that smartphone addicts typically dissociate themselves from their immediate surroundings and get consumed by the cyber world. They also display volatile behavior if smartphones are taken away from them. This disturbing behavioral pattern has caused families of people addicted to smartphones to seek medical help.
Know How To Beat Smartphone Addiction
Like all other behavioral addictions, addiction to smartphones can be addressed by developing a healthy and balanced habit of smartphone usage.
In order to treat more severe cases, mobile de-addiction centers have cropped up across many Indian cities. But, India still lacks the adequate psychiatric infrastructure and mental health awareness to address such a mental health epidemic. Because of this, treatment processes are slow and relapse rates are high.
With the country touted to be on the brink of a digital revolution with an ever-growing number of smartphone users, experts are fearful that this will only serve to worsen the situation.